Playing god is a familiar feel for many video game genres, such as action titles where your character is invincible or sims where you control everything. I rarely feel like playing God when playing a puzzle game, but humanity offers it in new and surprising ways. The unique style of puzzle solving uses directional cues and commands to guide little ones to the end point. The puzzles start off simple, but humanity builds on this core system in exciting and challenging ways throughout its 100-plus stages, pushing me to my limits while telling a heartfelt story about human nature.
Humanity is an immediately striking game. Its visual style is minimalistic, focusing on 3D puzzle areas. But the soft and beautiful backdrop illuminates my actions as I guide a colorful crowd of humans through a variety of challenges. I start with a simple command: One Direction. I place it on the ground, and when the line of men crosses it, they walk in that direction. My journey through humanity introduced me to a lot more commands, such as completely stopping actions, jumping, and using weapons like lightsabers and guns to take out an enemy – among others – that sometimes hindered my progress. work to prevent. These new commands keep the puzzles of humanity feeling fresh, and it was especially interesting to see how developer Tha Ltd used the challenges to change my perception of how commands could be used.
After spending more than 30 minutes on the most complex tests I often felt there was no way for humanity to move forward as I marveled at my solution. But every time I doubt its potential to become more challenging, humanity introduces another wrinkle in its puzzle rules. And each time, I go from, “There’s no way to figure it out,” to feeling almighty 30 minutes later.
Humanity is peaceful and resting on its surface, which is often the case, but it is a challenging game. That is, if you don’t want to use humanity’s built-in solution video. However, these don’t show you how to choose alternate Goldie humans in each level, which unlock cosmetic changes for your humans and details like in-depth stats about your efforts.
These videos make it clear that Tha Limited wants all its players to experience storytelling in it. Tetris Effect Studios publishes Enhance, Humanity, and like Tetris Effect, Humanity does more than just provide satisfying puzzles. It puzzles with a surprisingly human narrative about our nature as a society, how we can work together to progress, and how we are all more connected than not. It’s sweet and simple but effective, especially after the challenges guiding thousands of humans towards the light.
Despite providing solution videos, there are moments when humanity feels like a chore to play. Because some puzzles have solutions that take minutes when humans move towards the end in real time, Humanity allows you to speed up what’s happening on screen by pressing R2. This doubles the speed, but when it takes a few minutes to get the solution, I’m still waiting a while. And because I often had to restart puzzles to see if a new command would fix what kept my humans from progressing every time, I waited a lot.
With test restart, you can keep your orders from the last attempt, which helps mitigate this issue, but waiting through all your other orders to see if a new puzzle is solved at the very end. does, becomes boring; In the last third of the game, I often found myself holding R2 and holding my phone, waiting to see if a new command worked. Seriously, the satisfaction I feel when successfully solving a puzzle always outweighs the frustrations I have while solving it.
Humanity features a level creator and a way to try out other players’ creations. While these seem like worthwhile attempts to continue the fun of the puzzle, I’m not creative enough to make my own. And after playing through Tha Limited’s handcrafted levels in the story, I’m thoroughly satisfied—enough that I don’t feel the urge to dive too deep into someone else’s puzzles. But level building can provide the extra, long-lasting fun someone else wants from this game.
Humanity strikes a delicate balance between challenging me at every turn and allowing me to feel like the god whose story I tell. It’s an imaginative experience that provides a rush that I imagine computer programmers feel when dozens of commands and lines of code work together to finally create the desired result. Its puzzles are wrapped in a beautiful package, from its minimalist visuals to its exquisitely clicky electronic beats. And best of all, these elements work together to emphasize a simple yet effective message about what it means to be human and how we can solve life’s most complex puzzles when we work together. Why is it easiest to do?